Cleaning Up After EFB

Upon the State Apiarists suggestion, we euthanized my hive and one of our nucs that had EFB. We talked about why we came to this decision in our blog post Inspecting the Hives with the State Apiarist. We euthanized the hives by taping up all the entrances to that the bees could not leave their hive. After a couple of months, all the bees had died and we were able to clean up the equipment and decide what to keep and what to throw away.

Bethany and I went through the super together. The super was clean enough that we decided to freeze the frames and use them again. This did not risk passing the EFB on because EFB is a brood disease. It is not normally in the super.


Here is what the top of the deep looked like. It also smelled of EFB and dead brood.


Here is a brood frame. As you can see, it is slightly moldy. We decided to throw out the brood frames.


Here is Bethany and I looking through more of the frames. The smell was so bad you could smell it from our front porch.


Most of the dead bees had fallen onto the bottom board. Small hive beetles had invaded the hive and were eating what was left. In order to make sure the small hive beetles did not make it into our other hives, we threw the larvae away.


We then looked in the nuc. The nuc frames were also really gross. We threw the nuc frames away as well.


The nuc frames had a lot more mold then the deep frames.


There is dead brood on this frame. The nurse bees must have died before this brood emerged.


Here is the bottom of the nuc. We threw all the gunk on the bottom away.


In order to ensure that all the traces of EFB were eliminated, I scorched the boxes, bottom board, inner and outer cover, and nuc. We now can reuse all this equipment. I also scorched the hive tool we used to clean the equipment up.


Here I am scorching the inside of the deep box.


Cleaning up equipment is a very unpleasant task, but must be done. We were glad we were able to keep some of the equipment.


2 Replies to “Cleaning Up After EFB”

  1. Once you cleaned your hive and put it back in use, how did your hive fare? My hive succumbed to EFB last year and I’m trying to determine if I can clean and reuse anything and what’s the risk for the upcoming season.

    1. We reused the equipment carefully. We tried not to give any one hive more than a couple of the frames at one time to reduce the risk of infection.

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